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Deal Ensures New York Teacher Evaluation Systems Don’t Expire

(FILE - credit: Chris Hondros/Getty Images)

(FILE – credit: Chris Hondros/Getty Images)

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ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — The teacher evaluation systems that New York required its school districts to adopt to get state aid increases this year will remain in place until they are re-negotiated, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders said Monday, addressing a concern at the center of New York City’s impasse with its teachers union.

Many of the evaluation agreements adopted by the state’s nearly 700 school districts were negotiated as one-year plans but will now remain in effect until they’re renewed or revised.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg had opposed any rating system that he said would expire before it could weed out ineffective teachers. His administration and the United Federation of Teachers could not agree on a plan by a January deadline and forfeited about $260 million in aid.

The agreement contained in next year’s budget also gives New York City and three other districts lacking evaluation plans — Hamburg, Pine Plains and Fallsburg — until May 29 to adopt a system or the state will impose one.

UFT President Michael Mulgrew said discussions with the city were taking place.

“But we know that no matter what— the city will not lose any more money,” he said.

“We’re very happy that the teacher evaluation system is ensconced inside the collective bargaining process,” Mulgrew said.

The legislation also permanently ties the implementation of a state-approved evaluation system with annual education aid increases.

At an unrelated news conference before the announcement, Bloomberg said the short duration of the evaluations was one of the problems hampering negotiations.

“The union wanted to use the expiration of the evaluation system to keep ineffective teaches in classrooms, not to mention hold the city hostage in future negotiations,” Bloomberg spokeswoman Lauren Passalacqua said after the announcement. “These provisions will prevent that from happening.”

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